The way to market public domain books is to add value. You want to leverage all possible versions of each title in order to generate a rising tide of income.
This is no longer just creating a “better marketed” book, but one with immensely enhanced user experience.
You can and should be porting your chosen books into all possible formats.
The best leverage is from courses, so this would seem to be your first approach. The pilot would help you generate all the material needed. But you also already have the books and should get these up. Annotate them with “audio inside” by creating all the podcast episodes for that book. Which means you should create the podcast before you publish the book. You’d also generate “content upgrades” for each podcast which would be opt-ins to your list.
That’s a lot of work.
Let’s see if we can make it into a workflow:
0) Find a series of books you are interested in and would like to discuss. Verify how they are selling as ebooks, paperbacks, and hardbacks. Also check “competition” at the same time, and the general prices being suggested. (A note on prices – making your’s a dollar higher with “audio inside” would make it a better perceived value. Low price doesn’t always win. Higher percieved value usually does.)
1) Create the podcast episodes and pre-schedule them.
create content upgrades such as action steps and summaries as downloadable PDF’s.
redirect-links to courses (which point to a landing page with downloadable outline and opt-in)
edited with UTM-enabled redirect links to podcasts for each chapter
Lead Magnet front and back (UTM redirect links).
Lead Magnet for the first book goes to getting the second as a free offer for joining the mailing list.
Lead Magnet for the second book goes to the bundle, where they can get all three for a lower price.
Lead Magnet fot the bundle is for the course (which uses the bundle as a course text.)
Third book in series is never published on Amazon, but is published everywhere else. Lead Magnet here goes to the bundle.
Course for each book, using that chapter as a lesson.
Action steps have already been created in the podcast.
Master course which has all included.
Course is launched as evergreen, with landing page adding new videos dripped every day along with automated emails to alert subscriber to them.
The general plan is to get everything supporting or pointing to the course. You engage readers in the course so they help you build it. As you build the course, you are compiling the fourth book in the series.
The course is also sold as a bundle on various sites. This works best if you are offering each book of the series as its own course-bundle, and it has links and promotional offer for the rest of the courses in that series.
For each title in that series, you have:
A podcast series with content upgrades that get your listeners to opt-in.
Every possible text-based version (ebook, paperback,hardback)
A course which links to each of the above.
Then you have a master course, which takes a person through all these courses in sequence – and is available for a much higher price, but lower than buying each book-course separately.
You should also experiment with Pay What You Want for these, depending on your market.
Those public domain titles now are better than any new book being produced. They can download the audio and read along on their smartphone or tablet. (And listen to the sponsor ads.) Your marketing pushes the approach that classics are still bestsellers for a reason, and by taking the course, they’d get a completely new experience and better understanding of that book.
This isn’t a “carved in stone” approach. There is plenty of room for improvement. And I’ll probably revise the above with my own experiences. But right now it’s a way you can start to shift your own concepts around as to how PD books can be leveraged and made profitable. PD books don’t have to be a “race to the bottom” and competing at the .99 level on Amazon. Each of them are classics for a reason. Find this out, amplify it through your added-value, and you’ll create a completely new audience experience they will be flocking to.
Who said there’s no money in public domain works?
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Note: On review, I spotted something which could be confusing. If you take my hard-won advice, you’ll publish on all platforms. If you are still only on Amazon, then you can have books simply link to the next one in their Lead Magnets.
If you’re on iTunes, Kobo, Nook, et al, then that’s confusing (why send perfectly good buyers over to Amazon – they are there for a reason.) The real place to send them is to your own site for that buy page, preferably via an opt-in.
I bring most of my readers into a membership, or through an opt-in form to a page which has all the related books for that series. (And my Lulu offers on those pages are always cheaper than Amazon, at least in the paperbacks.)
Books on Amazon and any distributor are just emissaries and lead generators. Your real world exists on your own site. Bring your readers there so you can offer the best possible experience.
Hope this helps clarify.
The post How to Publish Public Domain Books and Profit Nearly Forever – Part 4 appeared first on Live Sensical.
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